Monday, August 18, 2014

Simple pleasures

They say the best things in life are free.  I believe that.  As I look out over my summer garden and see all the beautiful color, nature is smiling back at me.  

The black-eyed-susans are in full bloom now and spreading themselves everywhere.  

I picked a handful this morning and brought them inside to enjoy.  

It's the little things in our lives that can make a big difference.  Simple little pleasures.  

So go ahead, pick some flowers today and bring them inside to enjoy.  You'll be glad you did.  

Have a good week!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

"Nature" crafts

I started a few projects this week, and when I finished them, I realized they all had something to do with nature.  Funny...hadn't even thought about it until I was taking photos.   

So here are my "nature" crafts I've been working on.  

A white bird house for the fence post in the back garden.  

 I cut and pressed a fern leaf for framing.  

And I painted a rock with butterflies.  This will make a great paperweight and I'll be listing this on etsy.  

Simple and fun nature crafts.  

Monday, August 11, 2014

Summer days

Here we are, mid August already, and suddenly I'm finding myself wanting to hang on to summer with all my might.  How about you?  Maybe it's this unseasonably cool weather we've been having here in the south ~ gray days, and to top it off...a lot of rain. 

Please stay, summer!  Send warm days, blue skies, and bright sunshine. I'm just not ready to let you go.  

Enjoy your week, everyone!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Recycled tins

You know those decorative tins you get when you buy candies or nuts or cookies, and are just too pretty to throw away? 

Here is how I recycled some of mine.  

Some can be useful, and some purely decorative!  

Have a good week, everyone!  

Friday, August 1, 2014

Chalk painting an old dish cupboard

Good morning, my friends, how are you?  I hope you're having a good week.  Can you believe it's August already!    

I want to show you a project I've been working on using chalk paint.  I have never painted with chalk paint before but I have seen beautifully transformed pieces of furniture on some of your blogs and I have been wanting to give it a try.  

Let me tell you first how this all came about.  I had an idea in my mind for quite some time, of an old dish cupboard that I wanted in the kitchen.  I've seen a lot of these cupboards in my "English Home" magazines and I love the look.  Well, last week, while antiquing with hubby and my sister and her husband, I saw a cupboard just like the one I had in mind.  I showed my dear hubby and he said, "I can make one for you".  Well......, yes, that sounded good.  

So the next day, true to his word, out of an old wooden door that he had stored in the garage, he made my cupboard.  Custom made!  Can't beat that!  

Here are some photos, before and after.  

Two coats of "Old Violet".  Then I used a dark soft wax to finish it.  

Above is the kitchen before.  

And the kitchen after.  

Thank you again, dear hubby, for making this for me.  

And I might add, using chalk paint is so easy, it covers just about anything, and you can use the regular wax or dark wax to get just the right color you're looking for.  
'till next time, 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Twinkle lights

Hello my friends, how are you?  We finally have a clear day today after lots of rain, but still very overcast and gray.  I have been feeling the need to get out in the garden and do something, even if it's just pulling weeds.  Does the garden ever call to you?  Galen thinks I'm crazy, but I find it very rewarding and therapeutic.  

I decided to restring twinkle lights outside in the jasmine over the back porch.  The lights will usually last about six months so I only have to replace them twice a year.  They went out two nights ago.  

I twist the lights through the vines starting at the bottom, taking them up and over the porch door and ending near the pergola.  It makes the prettiest light at night.  No matter how dark it is you can always see without turning a harsh overhead light on.  The twinkle lights create a nice ambiance.  

Lights are maybe I'll go pull those weeds.    

Enjoy your day!  

Monday, July 14, 2014

Drying Hydrangeas

Would you like to have beautifully dried hydrangeas for fall and winter arrangements?  The trick is in picking them.  Hydrangeas do best when allowed to dry naturally on the plant before picking.  Fresh blooms do not dry very well.  

I cut a bunch the other day, took all the leaves off, tied them by the stems with rafia and hung them to dry.  You could also dry them in a vase or pot if the stems are strong.  

After the hydrangeas are dry, arrange them in a pretty container or use them in making a wreath for hanging.  Dried hydrangeas make lovely arrangements.  


Friday, July 11, 2014

Strawberry pot and a sign

I found this bright orange strawberry pot at Yoder's Hardware store last week and just had to have it!    

After filling it with strawberries from our strawberry patch in the back of the garden I decided to put it outside the kitchen where I can see it and where it will be close to pick berries for our morning cereal.  

  ~ Then I had this idea....

why not have a bright orange welcome sign as well?  

So I painted the sign and hung it on the garden gate.  The orange goes nicely with the blue and terra cotta pots and other accessories I have in the garden.    

Have a good weekend!